Pizza, Elevated

Bring the pizza parlor home and host an upscale pizza party with homemade dough and a variety of delicious toppings.

Looking for your next dinner party idea? Bring the pizza parlor home and host an upscale pizza party with homemade dough and a variety of delicious toppings. Guests will love putting their own spin on the pies, and you can get creative with the décor, using checkered tablecloths, candles, and red aprons for your guests, to add a chic touch. And to truly maximize the summer, set up shop in your backyard, where you can finish off the made-to-order pizzas on the grill for that fire charred flavor.

The Dough

Pizza crust is one the most important aspects of the pizza -- even with the best toppings, if your dough isn’t up to par, the whole pie will suffer. While it might seem daunting or time-consuming, making your own dough is relatively straightforward and will be infinitely more flavorful then packaged or store-bought options. The basic recipe simply combines flour, salt, yeast, and water into dough that is rested for several hours, but pizza geeks swear by the added flavor you get with a cold-fermented dough, allowing it to slowly ferment and rise in the refrigerator. The Electrolux humidity controlled crisper drawers will help keep the dough in the perfect cool environment throughout the rising process. Or, if you’re really in a pinch and don’t have time to make your dough, the next-best option is asking your favorite pizzeria to buy some of theirs -- they’ll generally happily oblige.

Make enough for each guest to have their own individual-sized pie, so everyone can get in on the fun of preparing the pizzas. Pre-size the dough ahead of time to cut down on prep time during the party; When your guests arrive, everyone can top their pizzas and bake them either on a pizza stone, or if you don’t have one, a regular baking sheet will do just fine. Cranking up the oven to the highest temperature, between 450°F and 550°F will create that perfectly toasted crust. And with its large capacity, Electrolux ovens allow for multiple pizzas to be baking at once.

Upscale Pizza Toppings

Think beyond the usual pie, and pick up some gourmet and seasonal topping ingredients to help bring you pizza party beyond the neighborhood parlor. Instead of only tomato sauce, use spreads like pesto, bacon jam, and Thai curry, slow-simmered using Electrolux's induction cooktop for precision control, as a base for your pies. Swap out your pepperoni for artisanal prosciutto or speck, or pick up some local sausages from your favorite shop. For cheese, try goat, Burrata, and Gorgonzola instead of the classic mozzarella, and pick up some sun-dried tomatoes as well as some colorful cherry tomato varieties at the farmers market. Add some interesting vegetables to the mix, such as squash blossoms, kale, corn, and roasted garlic. Just remember to get a wide variety of ingredients — having a mix of creative toppings along with a few classics will guarantee that everyone will find something they like.

Pizza Pairings

Don’t forget about the drinks. When it comes to pairing beverages with pizza, look for light and refreshing drinks with medium acidity to help cut through the rich and earthy flavors sauce and cheese tend to have. Full bodied wines with medium- to high-acidity like Chianti and Nero d’Avola work well in cutting through some of the hearty flavors of pizza, as does a sparkling Lambrusco. Or try a light and refreshing beer like a saison or a hoppy American Pale Ale, which will pair well with the herbal flavors in the pies.